While you might think of tooth loss as something that happens as you age, the truth is that 7% of people around the age of 17 have lost one tooth?
There are many reasons for tooth loss, such as decay, injury, and trauma. Thankfully, you don’t have to live with a gap in your teeth if you choose a dental implant.
What are dental implants and why are they a great choice for restoring the look and function of your teeth? In this article, you’ll learn more about implants to see if they’re the right solution for you.
What Are Dental Implants?
Dental implants are a permanent solution to filling in the gaps in your teeth. They are anchored into your jaw by the titanium implant itself and topped with a false tooth or a crown. Unlike dentures, they are not removable and are meant to blend in with your other teeth.
Because the implant is fused to your jawbone, the success rate of dental implants is an impressive 95%.
Benefits of a Dental Implant
While the decision to get dental implants is a personal one, there are many benefits if you’ve lost teeth. Here are a few benefits to consider.
One of the best reasons to get a dental implant is its longevity. Because of their placement within the jawbone, this makes them permanent. There’s no worry about them falling out, moving, or slipping around.
When they’re well taken care of (outside of accidental chips or cracks), dental implants are expected to last a lifetime.
2. Ease of Care
Since the implant is designed to look and feel like your normal teeth, they’re very easy to take care of. You brush and floss normally, without removing the implant at all. Don’t forget that regular check-ups at your dentist are necessary to ensure that everything is healthy as well.
3. Improved Functionality
When you suffer from tooth loss, this impacts your ability to do normal activities like eating, drinking, and even speaking. Filling in those gaps allows you to restore your mouth to its normal functions and makes speaking and eating more pleasant, and allow you to eat the foods you love. For the most part, there are no restrictions on what you can and cannot eat when you get dental implants.
Missing a tooth, or teeth can lower your self-esteem and confidence. You might find yourself staying home from social gatherings or not participating as much as you normally would. Getting dental implants not only restores your mouth but your confidence as well, especially since no one would know that you have dental implants.
You can have the confidence and the courage to enjoy your life without feeling like everyone is looking at you.
5. Maintain Bone Loss
When you lose a tooth, your jawbone stops making bone causing your face to look shrunken in. This is because the root of the tooth is responsible for this function. When you replace the missing tooth with an implant, the implant then tells your jawbone to continue to make bone.
A dental implant is essential if you want to maintain your facial structure.
6. More Than One
Sometimes you lose more than one tooth. The great thing about dental implants is that they’re not just for people who’ve lost one tooth, but you can get a partial or an entire mouth of dental implants. This may take more time, but it’s worth it because of the longevity of dental implants.
Who Qualifies for Dental Implants?
Generally speaking, if you’re an overall healthy individual with a healthy mouth and no to very little decay, you likely qualify for dental implants.
However, you might not be a candidate if you have decay or other health problems like diabetes, certain cancers, and you’re not a smoker. You must also be committed to good oral hygiene practices because this is a key factor in the success of your dental implant.
Your dentist will do an evaluation with you to make sure you’re eligible for dental implants before you start the process.
Are There Any Risks?
While getting implants is a typically safe procedure, there are some risks associated since it’s considered a minimally invasive surgery. These risks may include:
- Nerve damage
- Infection if not treated well post-surgery
Your dentist should review the risks with you before and after the surgery as well, but remember that risks are rare and the benefits outweigh the risks when it comes to the health of your teeth.
Dental Implant Process
The process from the gap to the dental implant may take several months. It’s not a one-visit procedure, because everyone’s case is different. Your dentist will need to clear you for dental implants and then talk about your goals for the look of your teeth.
Once your dentist approves you for implants, they’ll take several x-rays and molds of your teeth. If needed, they’ll take a bone graft to assist your jawbone in stabilizing the implant. You’ll schedule a time for the implant itself to be inserted first, and after that, it may take several weeks to heal before moving on to the next stage.
After you’ve healed, you’ll return for the placement of the abutment, which is the hook that holds on the false tooth. Your dentist will use the molds to fashion the new tooth that reflects the look of your other teeth. Sometimes this tooth may take a few weeks to come in depending on how it’s made.
Are Dental Implants for You?
Whether you’re considering one dental implant or several, you can feel confident that implants are a great choice to maintain the health of your teeth.
Are you considering dental implants to improve the look of your smile? Our team can help you. Contact us today to schedule your appointment and achieve the smile you’re looking for!